I moved this past weekend, into an apartment with two really great girls. They’re nice and normal, they’re my age, they do yoga and have friends and we ask how each other’s days have been and we laugh and we drink wine. I carried all of my worldly possessions (and my cat) into this new place with with the help, love, patience, and support of some of my best friends. I’m exhausted, but I feel really great — better than I’ve felt in a long time.
Until this week, when I gave the old apartment a thorough cleaning and carried the remainder of my stuff out of it, I felt like my life was fairly balanced, all things considered, that the decisions I was making were fairly healthy. Sure, it was kind of strange that I was still living in the apartment that I had moved into with a boyfriend of quite-a-few years, kind of strange that I stayed in the place after we split (even if I did rearrange the furniture). But I didn’t think much of it — perhaps didn’t let myself think much of it, because I couldn’t, because I had to stick it out through the end of the lease, because I had always dreamed of living “on my own” in the big City, in my own apartment, doing my own thing, being a grown-up.
But as I walked around the empty place today, checked the closets and cupboards and corners for anything left behind, found nothing of mine in any of those places, and closed the door behind me for the last time, I felt an unexpected sense of relief, a weight being lifted that I didn’t even know was there. About eight months ago I felt like I was starting over, but in a sort of scary, sad, uncertain way. This week, I feel like I’m starting over yet again, but in a confident, exciting, bring-it-on way.
I’ve had so many moments in the past three-quarters of a year where I am just floored, totally awed by the fact that I get so many chances to fix my life, to start over, to try, yet again, to do things right. I can’t get over it and I can’t understand it, no matter how many times it happens — this undeserved grace, these umpteenth chances. I’m facing another chance to start over right now, another chance to make the right decisions, to follow the right leads. It’s incredible and exciting and awe-inspiring, and I get goosebumps thinking about it.
I think this move is a really healthy thing. In many senses, I feel like this is one of the few decisions I have made for myself, not for any other person, in the past. . .five years? I’m making this season of my life truly mine. I know that I needed these past few months to be on my own, to struggle and fight with myself, to live somewhat extravagantly and selfishly, to have the wind knocked out of my sails a bit. But now I feel that I am ready to seek balance, to make healthier decisions, to let into my life the people who are important to me, to recognize what is and is not good, helpful, beneficial.
A recurring feeling for me is that of being stuck between two binaries, jumping erratically from situation to situation, decision to decision, lifestyle to lifestyle. But I truly want to find the balance between those binaries, to embrace the gray area between the oppositional situations and decisions and lifestyles, to live act for the right reasons and have confidence in that. And I think I’m on my way.
“If life’s just a living room, I’m in the hall and I’m glad.” – David Gray